Pasco vigil held for domestic violence victims
NEW PORT RICHEY - Tuesday night, the front steps of the Pasco County Sheriff Office was transformed into a place of tribute and defiance. Members of the community, Pasco Sheriff's Office and the Salvation Army Domestic Violence Program held a vigil for the victims of domestic violence. Close to 50 people stood as the sun faded, holding glowing candles. "You're not alone. It's not your fault," Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco said in reference to domestic violence victims. "What you have to do is stand up and that's why we have our victims advocates. That's why we have the sheriff's office – to stand with you."Our deputies, our members, we handle this too many times a day. Our case loads are filled with domestic violence incidents. We need it to stop." According to the sheriff's office, there were 3,300 cases of domestic violence reported in Pasco County, which represents a 5.8 percent decline from 2010. This year, according to Lynn Needs of the Salvation Army, three women in Pasco County lost their lives due to domestic violence. The vigil also featured speaker Margo Brandon, who was shot by her former husband in September 2006. The bullet entered her right side, piercing her lung, intestine and liver, forcing her to spend 30 days in an intensive care until. "My story is a simple tale," she told the crowd Tuesday night. "It's a story with twists and turns along the way – of survival against all odds, of compassion, and empathy."
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